Jul 13

Elvis Costello: “Indoor Fireworks”

Elvis Costello -- King of America

“King Elvis”? I’d vote for him! (Hmmm… maybe it doesn’t work that way…)

Back again for what I thought was the 3rd annual 4th of July-related post. But then I looked a bit closer and found that I didn’t do one last year after all — so this is actually the “2nd bi-annual 4th of July-related post.” Ah, tradition!

Poor X and/or Dave Alvin: once again, their great and very appropriate song, “4th of July,” has been overlooked, simply because I thought that was the one I did last year and instead went ahead and chose “Indoor Fireworks,” by Elvis Costello (“and the Costello Show,” technically, but I didn’t feel it was necessary to use that in the post title), from his great 1986 album, King of America. And there’s no turning back now!

It’s not like the Fourth is my favorite holiday of the year — it’s just that there are quite a few good songs that relate to it. But of course, I like the 4 F’s of the day as much as anyone: friends, family, food, and fireworks! (I’m sure we could all think of some other F’s, but let’s stop there, shall we?) And on “Indoor Fireworks,” Elvis brings together three of them: family, fireworks, and…oh, wait, I didn’t use that other one. But you know what I’m saying: the song is about the metaphoric fireworks that fly between people in the name of love, or the dying embers thereof. And it sure would make an interesting soundtrack to the beginning parts of a fireworks display, wouldn’t it? If only it weren’t such a sad song, someone might have tried that by now…

It’s time to tell the truth
These things have to be faced
My fuse is burning out
And all that powder’s gone to waste
Don’t think for a moment dear that we’ll ever be through
I’ll build a bonfire of my dreams
And burn a broken effigy of me and you

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